Western Digital MyBook Pro Edition II 1TB: Take One


I’ve been looking for a solid storage solution primarily for digital photos and video which currently consumes just over 110GB of disk space (50GB/photos and 60GB/video). I was in CostCo (a “big box” warehouse store) the other day and they are currently selling the 1 terebyte Wester Digital MyBook Pro Edition II with the triple Firewire/USB interface for $369 which appears to be a very competitive price according to Froggle. I’d done quite a bit of searching for good solutions and this seems to fit the bill fairly well especially considering it has the flexibility to easily support both RAID 0 and RAID 1, my preference.

So, I get the box home and I’m excited to get it hooked up and put an end to the constant stream of DVD’s I’ve been burning which covers only photos since the videos are too large. The MyBook couldn’t really be much easier to to install, pop in the CD, hook up the desired I/O interface cable, firewire 400 in my case and plug it in. Unfortunately, that’s where my experience ended, the small led indicator on the AC adapter brick lit up but the device never responded. The blue indicator lights on the front never flickered nor did the power button respond. I thought I’d noticed a hint of an electrical smoke smell briefly after I plugged it in and I’m guessing that had something to do with it. I fooled around for a bit adjusting the connections but the device was simply dead. Having purchased it at CostCo returning it other than a trip to the store was painless though I didn’t have time, with two tired kids in the cart, to wait in line to pick up a replacement so I’ll have to wait for another day.

I really like the device and even though I’ve read about it being rather loud I don’t intend on having it on all the time so that doesn’t really both me unless it wakes the kids which I can’t imagine.

On a related note, I found this blog post by Jeremy Zawodny as it has some great information and lots of good comments.

Btw, in case you’re wondering the screenshot here is a picture of $g(WinDirStat) of my existing backup drive which is a $g(LaCie 250GB USB external drive) of which I’ve recently found some not so glowing reviews.

What are you doing for storage? What about some of the available online storage solutions?

7 thoughts on “Western Digital MyBook Pro Edition II 1TB: Take One

  1. I actually bought this device myself too. The loud noise was to much during the streaming of movies to XBMC. It sounded like a hairdryer to me. Eventually I took the thing apart and used a dremel on it to make a big hole in the metal plating behind the fan. The noise now seems to be as loud as my PC so it doesn’t really bother me anymore, have to experiment a bit more to make sure it’s not a fluke.

  2. I use NAS devices. You plug them in the (wireless) router, and everyone can access them on the network. Some can we configured for RAID too.
    Here is one from D-Link http://www.dlink.com/products/?pid=509 that I know is good. You have to buy hard disks separately, but it can grow with you (and the increasing size of photos and videos). It also works with just one hard disk if you are a cheap starter 🙂
    Most NAS systems come with auto backup features too.
    Look at its other features. music-streaming, FTP, print server 🙂

  3. I would recommend against NAS. Most, if not all, NAS boxes run on a version of Linux. This means you can easily lose your data when sudden circumstances arise, like power suddenly going out. These NAS boxes are unable to restore improperly or unmounted partitions when power is suddenly lost.
    I had the Linksys NAS box for a while. I lost all the data on my drive at least twice when the box crashed. You are better off attaching a drive to a PC. I would say use a Windows PC as the data loss episodes with the Linksys greatly diminished my trust in Linux and its ability to maintain drive integrity.

  4. I own a few Western Digital My Books and they are hands down my favorite. I actually have the 500GB Essentials and I can use software RAID. At least with the 500GB versions there is almost no noise and the power brick is much smaller than some of my other external drives.
    What I like most about them is their look and feel. A collection of them lined up like books looks pretty clean and I don’t feel like some cave-nerd with wires and ugly enclosures everywhere. I only wish that WD would make a version that I could put a small form factor mobo in so my entire desktop experience would look like just a set of little black books. It would be the perfect setup for someone running Windows Home Server.
    As far as offsite using S3 as the backend seems to be the way to go.

  5. Weird. I just picked up the 500GB Pro version last week. I can’t get it to work with my Firewire, and Ghost doesn’t work with my Vista laptop, so I’m off to a crawling start. But I did manage to get it formatted as NTFS. 🙂

  6. I have the exact same expriences with 2 MyBook Pro Edition II bought at Costco. Not sure what the problem is.

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